Facts, opinions, and the real story behind Mary Kay Cosmetics.

Unit Clubs Are Not About Retail Sales

Seminar is the time when we celebrate the directors who made “Unit Clubs.” These are levels of recognition beginning at $300,000, with $1 million being the huge milestone that is celebrated. Mary Kay officially calls the dollar figures “estimated retail production.” That’s a misleading phrase.

The sales directors themselves tell outright lies about what the $1 million (or lower) figure is. They will say “my unit sold” or “our unit sales were.” Nothing could be further from the truth.

Unit clubs are calculated based on wholesale orders placed by unit members. That number is multiplied by 2 to represent the suggested retail price of the products ordered. Once or twice throughout the year, Mary Kay offers something called “double credit” in which the suggested retail total ordered is multiplied by 2. (So when double credit is happening, wholesale orders are essentially multiplied by 4 for calculation of unit clubs.

You see below that sales director Kali Brigham says “…our RISE team who not only repeated selling ONE MILLION dollars in sales but they blew past it to achieve OVER $1,050,000.”

Kali knows darn well her consultants didn’t sell that much. In fact, she knows that only a fraction of those products were sold, and many of them were sold at a discount, rather than suggested retail value. Some of the products were given away as prizes and incentives. Double credit was offered by Mary Kay in October 2018, so Kali’s figures are inflated because of that.

If Mary Kay is such a wonderful opportunity… and if the products are so easy to sell…. Why don’t they talk about the actual sales of products? Why do they take an imaginary figure like this $1,050,000 and pretend those were retail sales? They know it’s false, and yet they keep saying it.


  1. Char

    (Tap, tap, tap) Paging the FTC. Hello? FTC please respond. (Tap, tap, tap) Is this microphone working? Can someone call maintenance?

    Meanwhile, thousands are getting scammed. It’s bull$hit and lobbyists.

  2. enorth

    “the mighty warrior women of our RISE team”

    Yeah, mighty warrior women. Those women are crying, too. They’re crying about the credit-card debt they incurred to buy YOU accolades and prizes.


  3. Juliet

    I can’t recall which of the resident writers [Raisinberry? LazyGardens? SuzyQ?] noted the following truth on a former post about this – can you imagine if General Motors were to announce one afternoon “okay, our sales are 100 million but today is DOUBLE CREDIT DAY!! So there ya go, we have 200 Million in sales!”

      1. Juliet

        Raisinberry, thank you, that is the missing key word – ABSURDITY. That’s what I couldn’t think of and there is no better definition for such a whacked out …….. I don’t even know what to call it. Alice In Wonderland Accounting? Mad Hatter Methodology? Flat Out Fraud, of course, but surely there must be a prettier phrase…

    1. JanRD

      And General Motors tracks actual sales. In real estate, the price of a house sold is considered on both the listing and the selling end, but this is understood and easily explained. To see people prancing around on stage at Seminar with a $400,000 sign in the background (based not on actual sales, but on $200,000 of unit orders) is ludicrous.

      1. Char

        “And General Motors tracks actual sales.” –

        And guess what folks, so does Mary Kay. They track sales to what they call consultants – the actual retail customer. They don’t track re-sales just like GM doesn’t track the auto section of the classifieds.

        1. Juliet

          oh that is brutal truth, Char!! THEY DO TRACK ACTUAL SALES!!! This is absolutely going down the rabbit hole. MK does track actual sales to the consultants, which they deny are the sales that make them #1 in the country! No, that’s sales to customers who are not consultants!! The one thing I learned about lying is the more convoluted it has to be – the worse the truth you are trying to hide. This not only causes me nausea, it is just sick, sick, sick. Business is never pretty, I know that but wow – this is not business.

      2. Mountaineer95

        And for the MK directors who tout these sales “figures”, the absurdity will become clear when they try to go back to the real business world and put these titles and sales amounts on their resumes. I did recruiting for awhile, and did see a few resumes with MK positions listed. This was before I discovered PT, but even then, as someone with a lot of actual retail sales management experience, I knew those “positions” and “accomplishments” they listed were absurd.

  4. Pinkwink

    And what is it with the word rise? Pretty sure it’s the most overused word for clubs, units, conferences, podcasts etc. can someone please think of something original??

    1. Lazy Gardens

      Double credit – it’s where MK lies on your behalf so more people have bragging rights.

      Your team orders $15,000 of stuff during a double-credit month and they pretend it was $30,000.

      You only get commission on the $15,000, of course, but for stage struts and awards nights, they pretend it was 30K.

      1. Char

        Now I’m seriously confused. Don’t they order/spend $7500, get acknowledged for 15k, and on double credit acknowledged for 30k?

        Isnt commission calculated on the “wholesale” amount? I’m asking.

        1. BestDecision

          If you order $100 wholesale, you get paid on that amount but are recognized for $200 retail. In Double Credit promotions, your recognition then becomes based on $400 retail. Similarly, during Double Credit 1 new recruit turns to 2 for year-end recognition like at Seminar happening now.

          The reason for Double Credit? Simple. Mary Kay sees a trend of fewer hitting the numbers normally required, so they run a promotion that will light the fire of people who are desperate for recognition. MK also wants the stages to appear full, so they need more qualifying than is really happening.

          1. Char

            (No offense to lazy as I’m just trying to understand clearly)

            Lazy said, “Your team orders $15,000 of stuff during a double-credit month and they pretend it was $30,000. You only get commission on the $15,000, of course, but for stage struts and awards nights, they pretend it was 30K.”

            So the team never ordered $15,000, they ordered/spent $7500 in the above scenario and were paid commissions on that?

        2. Lazy Gardens

          Commission is calculated on actual purchases … lets say that your unit of 100 ordered wholesale products for $25,000. That’s what you get commissions on.

          That would be called as $50,000 retail, and if it were a double credit month, they would call it $50,000 wholesale (with commissions on the actual $25K), perhaps credit you with $50K towards car production and prizes, and you would brag about $100,000 in sales in your unit.

  5. Juliet

    “Your team orders $15,000 of stuff”. FIFTEEN THOUSAND DOLLARS OF MAKEUP.
    I know I cannot imagine the number of boxes that must be. I went to a private college for nine months and it cost $15,000. It was worth it but that astronomical sum for a mere nine months petrified me. And they get pretend promotions…..they pay for their ”awards” 10x over….its a 55+ year racket and those who know will not stop it, and those who don’t somehow do not see it. wow.

  6. Wild Collards

    They are all channeling Maya Angelou when it comes to the word RISE. It’s the latest catch-phrase. Makes me gag, personally, when used in terms of these units and clubs and such.

  7. Almost Sucked In

    “Rise” – so unoriginal like most things out of Mary Kay. “Rise” is the name of the conference Rachel Hollis of “Girl, Wash Your Face” & “Girl, Stop Apologizing” fame. So be prepared for “Rise” until the next big thing comes out.

  8. Wild Collards

    It’s not good makeup or skincare at all. If all of these older MK NSD’s and Directors and Consultants are actually using the Timewise, I would think they would look much better than the majority of them do in terms of their “signs of aging” but based on what I see I don’t think the Timewise system is doing anything at all.

  9. Charles

    This double credit promotion that Mary Kay has makes zero sense to me. What does it do for anybody except give them a false sense of achievement? So if you ordered $ 100 wholesale from Mary Kay they act as if you have sold or will sell it for $ 400 retail even though they know full well it will never happen? At best, you would sell it for $ 200 and I’m guessing that doesn’t even happen that much with all the discounts and giveaways to customers, and all the makeup that never sells and is considered outdated.

    This double credit promotion concept only makes sense if you are the one consuming the products. For example, if an airline gives you one frequent flier point for every mile flown has a promotion during September where they give you two points for every mile flown, this makes sense because you are the one that consuming the product (points exchanged for free airline tickets).

    With this double credit promotion, all they are doing is saying you sold twice as much as you could possibly ever sell, and the people consuming the products are not going to give a damn as to what your wholesaler considered you to have sold. They are going to pay the best price they can get for a product where there is a lot of competition and weak demand. Certainly not double the normal price – any customer would laugh in your face if you said you are selling them $ 200 worth of makeup that you normally sell them for $ 100.

    This has to be the biggest line of BS I’ve seen from Mary Kay as of yet.

    1. TRACY

      I think it encourages people to order more than they otherwise would have without it. By propping up the numbers, the unit is now closer to a new “best.” Then the sales director can push for more orders than she otherwise would have…

  10. Mountaineer95

    To any consultants in this Rise unit who are reading this, when exactly did Kali or someone on her behalf contact you to confirm that you did indeed sell the products you ordered that count towards this million-plus figure? Did you have ANY items you bought at wholesale that: you haven’t sold, you kept for personal use, you gave away, or you discounted steeply? If so then that is PROOF that this million dollar figure is a LIE. And you know it, because you know that you did not sell, at double mark up, every bit of wholesale product you purchased. And this applies to any unit, really.

    1. BestDecision

      Absolutely! When I was a Director, we were taught to give recognition based also on what our unit members TOLD us they sold. For example, weekly recognition started at $300 retail. But, no one ever has turned in sales tickets to show their work. And it all falls back on MK Ash’s teachings of us following the Golden Rule.

      Pure crap.

  11. enorth

    Warrior, Rise, and Tribe. Also, “Wing it ’til you bling it.”
    I saw a SSD who declared the new MK seminar year to be “The Year of the Mustard Seed.”

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